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London e-bike rider in court accused of causing death of pedestrian by dangerous driving

Prosecution alleges Thomas Hanlon's bike exceeded power and speed limit at time of fatal collision...

A man who was riding an e-bike when he allegedly struck and killed a pedestrian in East London has appeared in court accused of causing death by dangerous driving in what is believed to be the first case of its kind, with the prosecution asserting that the bicycle exceeded permitted power limits.

Sakine Cihan, aged 56, died in hospital in September last year a fortnight after sustaining serious head injuries in a collision involving the rider of an e-bike while she was crossing Kingsland Road, Dalston, at 5pm on 28 August 2018.

Yesterday Thomas Hanlon, aged 31 and from Finsbury Park, appeared at the Old Bailey on a charge of causing death by dangerous driving, reports Mail Online.

The offence falls under section 1 of the Road Traffic Act 1988, which applies to motor vehicles.

Bicycles do not generally fall under the scope of the act.

However, electric bikes which have a power output in excess of 250 Watts and a power-assisted speed in excess of 15.5 miles per hour are regarded as a speed pedelec and must be registered with the DVLA.

The rider of an e-bike exceeding those permitted limits must be licensed and insured, and is subject to the same laws as motorists.

Nathan Rasiah, prosecuting, told the court: “In this case the evidence suggests it was travelling in excess of the road limit and the limit for the bike.

“If they [electric bikes] exceed a certain speed or power you do need a licence.”

Besides the causing death by dangerous driving charge, Hanlon – who has yet to enter a plea – was also charged with causing death while unlicensed and causing death while uninsured.

He has been bailed and will stand trial on 24 February next year.

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Simon joined as news editor in 2009 and is now the site’s community editor, acting as a link between the team producing the content and our readers. A law and languages graduate, published translator and former retail analyst, he has reported on issues as diverse as cycling-related court cases, anti-doping investigations, the latest developments in the bike industry and the sport’s biggest races. Now back in London full-time after 15 years living in Oxford and Cambridge, he loves cycling along the Thames but misses having his former riding buddy, Elodie the miniature schnauzer, in the basket in front of him.

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